Gilbert Cantin enters race for city council

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Another St. Albert resident has announced their intention to run for city council.

Gilbert Cantin went public last week with his plan to seek office.

A civil engineer who has worked on large infrastructure projects in Western Canada such as the Site C Dam in B.C., Cantin moved to St. Albert in 2014. He currently lives in Grandin Village with his wife and three children.

“It’s going to be exciting – no matter how it goes, I think the experience is always a growing one,” Cantin said of his entrance to the political realm.

He began watching city hall closely after former councillor Gilles Prefontaine was hired as chief community development officer in 2015, a decision that sparked concern with him. That hiring, he says, was the ultimate catalyst for his decision to enter municipal politics.

“I could bring quite a bit of my experience to the council. In the last few years, they seem to be struggling with their civil engineering department and I think my experience would be a plus,” he said.

One of Cantin’s main goals is to push for the twinning of Ray Gibbon Drive and lobby the federal government for funds to achieve that goal.

“Right now is a good time to get federal funding,” he said.

“If we don’t go get it, another community will.”

High taxes and a lack of affordable housing are other issues Cantin wants to tackle.

“For someone who is 20 years old, who wants to rent, they’re most likely going to go to Edmonton. And if we lose them at 20, there’s a good chance they’re going to stay in Edmonton,” he said.

Zoning and developing more apartments could help with that, he said.

Cantin is also a supporter of the construction of a sixth sheet of ice for the arena, which will be presented as a plebiscite question on the ballot.

Cantin will be running against Sandyne Beach-McCutcheon, Al Bohachyk, Wes Brodhead, Jan Butler, Craig Cameron, Mark Cassidy, Jacy Eberlein, Jacqui Hansen, Sheena Hughes, Charlene Jelinski, Natalie Joly, Mark Kay, Ken MacKay, Ufuoma Odebala-Fregene, Hannes Rudolph, Bob Russell, Steve Stone, Jaye Walter, Tash Taylor and Barry Zukewich. Current councillors Cathy Heron and Cam MacKay have launched mayoral campaigns, along with Malcolm Parker.

Nominations close on Sept. 18 and election day is Oct. 16.

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